Ask President Obama to Reject Anti-Wildlife Riders!

Congress is back this week after the long recess, and legislators have a hefty to-do list awaiting them in the lame duck. With only a few weeks remaining in the congressional year, Congress still needs to finalize a comprehensive energy bill package, pass the annual defense spending bill, and enact legislation to fund the federal government.

Unfortunately, all three of these bills contain destructive policy “riders” that undermine the Endangered Species Act and harm wildlife. These riders would block protections for endangered sage grouse, gray wolves, salmon, and other imperiled species, and others would directly undermine the law itself.

While disturbing, this is by no means shocking; there have been more than 125 individual legislative attacks on the ESA since the beginning of this Congress alone.

Last year, in large part thanks to the work of NRDC’s members and advocates, we were able to prevent all but one anti-ESA rider from being enacted into law. With your help, we can beat last year’s record by making sure that not a single bill passes to undermine the ESA or to threaten endangered wildlife. And with a Republican-controlled Congress, that means ensuring the Obama Administration stays strong in its opposition to any and all of these destructive riders.

Make your voice heard by calling the White House TODAY and urging the President to reject all anti-ESA and anti-wildlife riders on year-end legislation. Here’s how:

Call the White House at (202) 456-1111 and ask to leave a message for President Obama.

When you call, you don’t need to say a lot—just let them know your name, where you’re calling from, and this message:

Hello. My name is [Full Name] from [City, State]. I respectfully request that President Obama reject all policy “riders” in year-end bills that undermine the Endangered Species Act and harm wildlife. I urge the President to Veto Extinction.

And feel free to add as many of the following points as you’d like:

  • Thank you for past statements by the Obama Administration opposing ideological policy “riders” in spending legislation and other bills. Please stay strong in opposing all anti-wildlife “riders” including those that block protections for gray wolves, sage grouse, and other imperiled species.
  • Policy “riders” targeting particular imperiled species undermine not only the recovery of these species, but also the Endangered Species Act itself. The ESA is one of our most important environmental laws, supported by 90% of American voters. No law has been more important in preventing the extinction of wildlife.
  • The Endangered Species Act has a proven track record of success in protecting wildlife. It has prevented 99 percent of the species under its care from going extinct.  Please allow this critical law to continue to protect wildlife for future generations, not undermine it via unrelated spending legislation.

About the Authors

Elly Pepper

Deputy Director, Wildlife Trade Initiative and Wildlife Advocate, Land & Wildlife Program

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